More than 150 governments represented by their heads of states or senior officials arrived in Marrakech, Morocco, for a two-day United Nations-led conference on migration.
From December 10 to December 11, the delegations will discuss the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM)- a first-ever, inter-governmentally negotiated agreement to cover all dimensions of international migration in a holistic and comprehensive manner.
It was born out of the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, adopted unanimously by the UN General Assembly in September 2016, and is the culmination of 18 months of discussions and consultations among Member States, and other actors, including national and local officials, civil society, private and public sectors and migrants.
The United Nations Special Representative for International Migration Louise Arbour emphasized that “the compact’s essential strength is that it is cooperative” and that at it’s core, the compact is “a willingness for member states to cooperate with each other.”
The UN asserts that the GCM is not a legally binding document, that its text is an agreed outcome from the intergovernmental negotiations and it is for each State to determine its next steps.
The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres touted one of the most significant features of the Global Compact, during a reception ceremony. “It is its recognition of the essential roles to be played by many actors, including Governments and migrants themselves, of course, but also civil society, academia, trade unions, the private sector, diaspora groups, local communities, parliamentarians, national human rights institutions and the media.” he said.
Guterres continued to say that “with this in mind we have decided to establish the United Nations Network on Migration. And this will mobilize the full extent of our capacity and expertise to support you member states in this vital endeavor.”
The United Nations Network on Migration, will aim to mobilize the full extent of the world organization and expertise to support Member States in addressing migration. Guterres announced that the “the International Organization for Migration will play a central role” in the network- UN VIDEO